Avon Guyana is inviting 100 women with low incomes and no medical insurance, and whose risk of developing cancer is high to a free breast cancer screening and mammogram test, as part of its activities for Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Avon Guyana Chairman Mignon Bowen made this announcement at the official launching of activities at the company’s headquarters on Camp Street yesterday. Bowen explained that the three-month pilot project, called “Support for the Early Detection of Breast Cancer”, is part of activities to mark Breast Cancer Awareness Month and is funded by the Avon Community Help Fund and executed by the Guyana Responsible Parenthood Association (GRPA).
Bowen said the initiative was birthed out of the talks the two entities had at the Feminition Fair held earlier this year, where Avon had committed to providing funding following a request from the GRPA.
After the pilot phase has been completed it is anticipated that findings and recommendations will provide vital information on the way forward with similar projects.
GRPA Programme Director Sheila Yaw-Fraser said cancer has been a big issue locally and her organisation is focusing on women this month. She said the clinic screens an average of 15 patients every month for cancer. She also expressed hope that this number will increase with sensitization efforts that will be conducted during the month.
Further, Yaw-Fraser said that Guyana’s statistics reveal that women ages 40-59 are most at risk of developing breast cancer and she is appealing to women in this age range to visit the GRPA where they will taught how to do breast self-examinations and will be given free mammograms.
The panel also charged the populace to maintain a healthy weight, eat more fruits and vegetables, limit the consumption of red meats and implement physical activities in their daily lives in order to reduce factors that contribute to cancers.
Other breast awareness activities planned for this month are the ‘Wear Pink Day’ set for Thursday October 20 and Avon’s Annual Fitness walk on Saturday October 22. The walk starts at 6am from Parade Ground. The public is also asked to wear a pink ribbon or broach during the month as a symbol of their commitment to raising awareness about breast cancer while giving support to patients diagnosed with the disease.